Becoming a zombie

Do you find yourself losing track of time again? Without really knowing, a year passed. As day for day you continue your work, you had some random bursts of motivation, but you know that these kind of motivation spikes won't get you anywhere in the long term.

Martin Muzatko Written by Martin Muzatko

What you really need is determination. But how do you achieve that? And if you have that, are you really sure you spend it on things that matter? Not just for the moment?

I have a confession to make: This is exactly what happened to me this year. I did what everyone does when they are in a pretentious good mood: I made up some plans just to live another year without really doing. What the worst part of this is, is that you see yourself only as the silent bystander of your own acting. Not in control of the derailing train of thoughts, time, "will do" and "wanna do". Promises that you make up to finally continue your dead projects. You are not alone with these thoughts.

Why does it happen?

How do you become a Zombie? It might happen so slowly, you won't even notice it. You begin to accept that status quo more and more as part of your life. All you know, is that everything is shit and you don't know how to get out of this situation. Someday, you realize you have to change something. You have to start to help yourself. Since noone is there to help you out of this whole-heartedly. I don't want to say that friends won't help. They can be the starting point to help you out of your situation.

However, YOU are in charge of your life and where you are going with it.

So how can you help yourself?

Recently, I self-reflected a lot. I really had to allow myself to speak out all the thoughts about the problems I have. I recorded myself talking about my problems. I talked about why it is so tough to accept help from myself. About what I can do. It takes a lot of effort and thought to get out of there. Sometimes it helps to continue again, building the habit of looking into the problems more frequently, until you decide it is time for you to tackle them. We humans are so good at swallowing all the dirt on a daily basis. We tell ourselves every day: "Everything will turn out okay" or "It isn't that shitty". If you dare to face your problems and not just ignore them, you will be able to fight back.

Why is it so hard to accept help from ourselves?

We give all the time we have, but never do we find some time to do something for ourselves. You are not to blame. The problem is that from birth on, we are trained to be spoon-fed all the help we need to grow up. And even though you are a grown up human, you still don't rely on yourself to make your life a better one. Sure, we do rely on so many different people to buy food, to drive home, to cook, to eat, etc. We are way beyond hunter and gatherer that it is impossible to become self-reliant. I think in a world like this, it is even more important that you are able to carve out the courage, to face your own problems. There will be no one that will fix your problems forever. So you better start out to tackle your problems.

1. Self-reflect
A good way to do so, is to have a reason to do so. Whenever I record myself, I have a self-imposed obligation to talk. I don't want an empty record. It really helps to just braindump all the shit and rehear the recording to better detect how you deal with your fears and deeper problems.
2. Create habits
Habits are what keeps you on a task over a long time. I have my list of Trello tasks I have a look at on almost every day. This helps me to see what there is to do. There is no "I have no idea what to do" and no "I'm so overwhelmed by the amount of tasks!". This requires that you do the first step and self-reflect. Have a look at these two awesome videos about creating good habits that will help you to get shit done.
3. Looking forward
I only got so good in the things I do, because I love doing them, not purely because of the results. If you do something just for the results or money, it is hard not to force yourself into moving forward. Only if you enjoy what you do for doing it, it will be so much easier to achieve your goals. It takes a mindset to get there.
4. Foster your mindset
A while ago, I read Mindset - the new psychology of success. It is crazy how a simple idea - how to parent yourself - can help you to not stop growing. If you look at a situation and see how your mindset can block yourself from progressing, often it helps to just point that out to yourself. To find out how you can get past around it.

In a growth mindset, people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work—brains and talent are just the starting point. This view creates a love of learning and a resilience that is essential for great accomplishment. Virtually all great people have had these qualities.


Focus on what gives you the required energy

A year ago, when I also were in a perfect mood, only two things mattered to me: How do I obtain energy and how do I invest it correctly? This might sound very generic, but it is the main-mindset that got me moving in the first place. If you have all resources you need, you just need to know how to correctly use them.

This is a way you have to go for yourself in order to become a better you. Start by selfreflecting to find out what stops you from doing what you need to do to progress.

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